The Stories

Over the two phases of Measuring the Mountain we collected nearly 1000 stories about people's experiences of being an unpaid carer or of using care and support services in Wales.  The stories highlight the breadth of people's day-to-day experiences and capture incredibly positive experiences, as well as very poor ones.  The stories provide snapshots of people's lives and, collectively, demonstrate the unequivocal value of positive human interactions based on trust, respect, mutual understanding and a meaningful balance of power.     

Who we heard from

Citizens' jury

Between April and December 2018 we gathered 473 stories from people across Wales; and between August 2019 and May 2020 we gathered 520 stories.

The stories were gathered using SenseMaker and focused on people's individual, lived experiences.  People chose the story they wanted to share with the project and then they responded to questions to add further detail and context (you can view the framework here). 

In 2019 / 2020 the project heard from people aged 12 to 99 from across the country. Many of the stories were gathered by someone from the project attending community groups and events to talk to people about the project and hear their stories.  You can find more information about the sampling methods in the report.

What we found out

Citizens' jury

The stories reveal an incredible range in people's experiences and highlight the complexity of many people's lives as well as the enormous efforts people will go to in support of a family member, friend or loved one.

Many of the stories illustrate the importance of good relationships and thoughtful interactions between people using services and people delivering services.  Fostering trust, creating networks of support and establishing relationships with a balance of power were seen to contribute to positive experiences and good outcomes.

From the stories, key themes emerged about the efforts undertaken by unpaid carers, the issues that can arise when people need to move between services or work with multiple providers, and the incredibly valuable role that community groups and connections play for people.

What next? 

Time credits

We have uploaded a database of more than 450 stories gathered during the 2019 / 2020 work.  These stories contain a vast amount of information and provide valuable insight to people's lives and day-to-day experiences. 

We hope the stories prove to be a useful resource for people working in the care and support sector, people designing and delivering services, and those who are undertaking research or seeking to bring about change and improvements.

Visit the Resources page for all our reports and project materials.  Check out The Citizens' Juries page to learn about the recommendations made by our Jurors and visit our YouTube channel to watch the Jury sessions and learn more about what matters in social care to people in Wales.